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As you can see, I took a break from blogging about food. I also took a break from reading food blogs and generally obsessing over food.  The results were mixed.

I’ve been writing about how I’m stressed and that eating in a healthy way has been a struggle.  I realized that, over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been putting *a lot* of time and energy into focusing on food, to the point where I was obsessing over my failures and my accomplishments– and essentially, food was defining my day. Good days were when I ate a variety of healthy foods, bad days were when I ate unhealthy foods or ate when I wasn’t hungry because I was stressed.   I freaked out after my last post because I realized that while trying to be healthy,  food and my perceptions of how I eat were taking over my life.  Literally.

So then I thought about the food bloggers and whether or not this was a community that I could join for support.  I came the conclusion that I want to give it a try, because it seems to be so positive for other people.  I’m going to try and start talking about some other things in posts too, in addition to what and how I eat, to remind myself that I’m a dynamic person and not just the sum of what I eat.

As for food over the past few days, I had a couple of very healthy days and some really, really good meals.  I also binged once and felt like absolute shit afterwards.  Last night was also a disaster.  But that’s okay.  I’ll be back with normal posts tomorrow, and I’m going to get back on  track.

FYI- contests galore!  Check out Oh She Glows’ contest for a chance to win Jillian Michaels 30-Day Shred Workout DVD — open to anyone, anywhere in the world, so that includes ex-pats like me 😉 Also check out Chocolate Covered Katie’s Jocolat Larabar giveway, also open to people outside of the States.  Not finished yet! Check out Strawberry Shortstuff’s next Simply Bar giveaway— they look amazing.  Finally, just started reading a new blog and she’s already having a contest (!)– check out Krista’s Kravings yummy giveaway….

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Today was typical of an office environment;  a co-worker came back from three weeks in Canada and we were all ecstatic to see her.  In Israel, ecstatic= food.  She brough back a ton of maple candy and cookies, and everyone sat around to hear about the family wedding that she’d just a ttented and to eat.  I had already eaten lunch and *was not* hungry, so I told myself to drink my water, concentrate on the conversation, and just stay away.  After sitting there for an hour, I literally couldn’t take it anymore. I had no self-control.  I have a few pieces of maple candy and a bunch of cookies– something to the tune of 6.  If i had just had one or two, I wouldn’t be dwelling– but I completely binged.  I want to understand why, and I need to come up with ways of avoiding this!  If the only way for me to avoid eating crap that my body doesn’t want OR need is to stay locked in my apartment, that doesn’t really help me much.

Rest of the day was fine, though none of the food was terribly exciting:

Breakfast:

  • Quick Oats with Sweet-N-Low, two tbsp of peanut butter, and a splash of skim milk.
  • Decaf coffee with skim

Lunch:

  • Tuna with light mayo and tomato– on a roll– but it was white bread and kind of big.  It was what we had around the office and I didn’t want to go buy a whole wheat one– but I should have.

After Lunch Binge:

  • See above

Dinner:

  • Burrito with rice, an egg, sweet garlic sauce, and onion.  It was  just me throwing together snacks, but it was really tasty.  I had to force myself to eat dinner because I was tempted to skip a meal since I’d binged on cookies… I guess that it’s good that I didn’t.
  1. I’m really at a loss when it comes to understanding WHY I binged.  I couldn’t resist the temptation, it was a social situation?  Really don’t know.
  2. I am really sick of housesitting and want to go home to the collection of healthy food that I’ve built up over the past month.  I just brough some *scraps* here and my meals are getting dull, which is not encouraging me to do things like avoid binges.  Less than a week left, though.
  3. Didn’t drink enough water today!  Gotta fix that.
  4. Chocolate and coffee are still out of the picture!
  5. Adding a bit of peanut butter for a protein burst seems to be good.  It really helped with breakfast.  I need to find a lower-calorie peanut butter, though (that tastes good).  Probably difficult to find in Israel, which is annoying!

Really hoping to make today a much, much better day.  We’ll see.

Hope everyone has a good one–!

First– bloggers and non-bloggers: Strawberry Shortstuff has a contest going on (ends tomorrow!) to win 40 simply bars– and it’s open to anywhere in the world, which means that foodies like me– in a different country– are eligible 🙂  Check it out.

Also, send me links for your favorite food blogs… I’m looking for a few more.  Thanks!

x Tal

Today’s Food:

Breakfast (on-the-go):

 

  • Hot vanilla at Coffee Bean– sugar-free and with skim
  • Croissant 

 

Lunch:

 

  • Omelette with 2 egg and matbucha (<— try this!!!)
  • 1 fat free yougurt

 

Before dinner Drinking:

 

  • 2.5 glasses of merlot

 

Dinner:

 

  • Had dinner reservations with Rachel!
  • 3/4 of a roll (MAN I love bread! ugh!)
  • 1 glass of wine
  • small green salad
  • Chicken breast with mustard sauce!

 

img_5376

 

It was *very* yummy, and it was definitely the healthiest looking option on the menu.

Dessert:

 

  • Despite our hearty meal, we couldn’t resist– so we shared a creme brulee– very good.  We were at a kosher meat restaurant, which means that the dessert had no dairy products, so I’m not quite sure how they made it.  Anyway, sharing a dessert was a good move, because I’m sure that I would have devoured it on my own..

 

img_5385^ Creme Brulee that we shared

  1. 2/19 started out as a beautiful day; I’d had a great night the night before — with a certain someone, even if we’re completely dysfunctional and don’t know what we want– and I left his place in the morning, you know, sort of bouncing– totally ready for the day.  I think that it helped me make relatively healthy choices through lunch.  My mood SERIOUSLY affects what I eat.
  2. The croissant wasn’t the healthiest choice, but it wasn’t  too big and it didn’t have anything in it.  Still, just empty carbs and calories and I didn’t feel satisfied after eating it.  I’m going to make more of an effort to pack breakfast when I’m on-the-go.  Still, I need some suggestions for breakfasts on-the-go, because sometimes it’s inevitable… anyone?
  3. Eating out went well, I think.  The only thing that I wish I’d skipped was the 3/4 of a roll.  Very unnecessary, and it was white bread, too.  The problem was that it was out there before the food and I was *so hungry*.  Anyone have an strategies for avoiding before meal bread at restaurants?  I ended up eating the whole main course and not taking any home, but honestly– I wasn’t stuffed. I was full. And satisfied.
  4. Drank 3.5 glasses of wine, which is a lot, but if I only do that when I go to nice restaurants, I’ll allow myself the indulgence.  Same goes for splitting a dessert.

All in all, I feel good about today.  Eating a decadent meal at a restaurant didn’t make me feel guilty, mostly because it’s such an infrequent thing.

I came home to my laptop charger having been fried! I have to replace it, but I don’t know how or when, so bear with me if my posts are less frequent.  Probably not, though– I always find a way.  Anyway, stressed about this.  My computer is my right hand!

I’m thinking about what I need to do about my lactose intolerance.  Stop eating dairy, or lactaid pills.  Leaning towards the lactaid

Cheers to all 🙂

I struggle with doing things in moderation – it’s a character flaw that I’ve always had. I’m either living like a hedonist or punishing myself like a monk. I’m not good at taking the middle road, but that’s really the only way to go. I know that I can’t eat/drink whatever I like and lose weight and feel healthy, but I also can’t expect to give up all of life’s pleasures. I’ll fail – I know I will. People far stronger than me have failed when they try and cut everything out. So from now on, I’m just going to try and take everything in moderation. Moderate eating, moderate drinking, moderate exercising.

Today was good for me – I struggled a little bit (ate a large lunch), but I think ultimately I’m pleased with my choices for today (avoided the Haagan Dazs in my freezer).

Food Diary

Breakfast

  • 1/2 container of Fage yogurt, sweetened with 1 tsp honey (I find I like the honey better than the splenda – richer taste and splenda upsets my stomach)
  • Small serving of jalapeno home fries

Lunch

  • Whole baby carrots with curry
  • Chili w/ cheese & sour cream and cornbread (eek!)

Dinner

  • 3 cheese tortellini with parmesean cheese (no sauce)
  • Small head of broccoli
  • 1 glass red wine

I broke my alcohol rule, but to be honest, I’m not too upset about it since it was just one glass of wine, which is perfectly okay. I would like to stop eating these huge lunches, but my job makes it so difficult. Thankfully, I didn’t eat until I was bursting at all today. I ate enough to be comfortably full and enough where I didn’t feel the desire to snack at all. My plans for tomorrow have been canceled, so I plan on cooking a real dinner for myself – I have a recipe for a wonderful pear and walnut salad that I’ve been dying to make. I’ll throw in some protein and it should be enough for dinner. I desperately need to up my veggie and fruit intake, so I’m going to work on that tomorrow. They serve a lot of raw food at work and maybe I should start exploring those options.

All in all, I’m pleased about today. I can obviously do better, but I certainly could’ve done worse.

When I think about my desire to learn to live a healthier lifestyle and what sorts of things make that difficult, my friends come to mind.

Layla and I– in starting this blog– have developed a mutual trust. We, in addition to a couple of my close friends, can be supportive and keep our own emotions and struggles out of the picture when we’re talking about the others’ issues with food and exercise. Other than that, though, my friends are often my worst enemy when it comes to food.

First, there are the friends that don’t take this whole journey seriously. I get up the nerve to tell them that I’m trying to be healthy and that hey, I’d rather not go out to eat every time we hang out and that I’d prefer to use whole wheat pasta when we cook together– and then they pressure me to do otherwise. Why can’t these people be supportive? I definitely respect their choices to eat as they please and to not pay so much attention to health (I think that it’s a shame, but I don’t try and change their minds), so why can’t they respect my goals? I have to take responsibility for my own actions, I know that. Still, it would be so much easier to avoid *food disasters* if my friends were encouraging. I have enough issues with self-control and having friends that essentially want me to lose this battle with myself– well, it sucks.

Then, there are my friends that are also either dieting or trying to be healthier. You would think that we would be a support network for one another, and like I said, with a few close friends, that’s true. Still, I have several friends that just don’t feel like we’re ‘in it together.’ These friends resent it when I’m making healthy choices and they aren’t; this results in them pressuring me to ‘cave in.’ One of the stories that really, really sticks out in my mind is something that happened several months ago. I was completely healthy and ate well all day, and then went out for a night with a few girlfriends. We ended up drinking a lot and I told myself that I would *not* eat a second dinner (pizza, etc.), which is a habit that I picked up back in college when I drank wayyy too much. My friends inevitably ended up at the pizza place and I waited quietly, without ordering. My ‘friend’, also a health conscious person, literally waved her pizza in my face and said ‘you know you want to order some! just do it!’ It was so obvious to me that she just wanted me to join in her indulgence, and to this day, I *still* resent her for being so selfish. It was difficult enough to be pretty tipsy and to make a healthy choice (after having made an unhealthy one), and she didn’t care. She just wanted to ‘go down’ together.

I doubt that I’ll change these people, but I need to learn how to deal with them. Who can I ask for support from, and how? Ugh.

First thing is first– time to celebrate day 2 of no chocolate. Definitely had some cravings, but my coffee withdrawal was worse.

Today’s food:

Breakfast:

  • Bowl of Cheerios with skim milk
  • Fat-free yogurt

Lunch:

  • Small salad, leftover from last night (lettuce, cucumber, strawberries, light vinegarette)
  • Yam, Zucchini, Chickpea salad (followed the recipe exactly, except I didn’t use any salt– I never cook with salt) on 1.5 whole wheat pitas

Dinner:

  • Leftover Yam, Zucchini, Chickpea salad on 1/2 of a whole wheat pita
  • Tiny scoop of rice with leftover garlic soup from yesterday

Adventures in Baking:

  • 1 Lemon Bar (great recipe, really simple)
  • 1 Cookie (see photo and recipe below)
  • Did *not* snack on dough, etc. while baking!
  1. Today was just fine in terms of food. Perhaps I didn’t need a cookie and lemon bar, but I’ll live. As far as baking goes, this is the most successful that I’ve probably ever been in terms of avoiding a food disaster. We baked right after lunch so that we weren’t hungry, and then I drank some decaf coffee while we were baking to keep my mouth busy. I’m bringing the baked goods to a friend and into work tomorrow– people really enjoy baked goods and I really want to be able to bake on a consistent basis without it ruining my healthy endeavors. Today wasn’t bad at all!
  2. I was a little lame today with the leftovers, though I suppose that it wasn’t unhealthy. Just boring…

These cookies are by no means healthy, but they’re only about 100 calories a piece. My advice? Eat 1 and give the rest to special people.

Cherry Shortbread Cookies

fd-016

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 cup cherries
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. Combine butter, flour, and confectioners’ sugar. Beat butter by itself for about 5 minutes, an then add flour and sugar until light and fluffy. Spoon onto cookie sheets, spacing cookies 2 inches apart. Put a cherry in the middle of each cookie.
  3. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the bottoms of the cookies are lightly browned.
  4. Remove from oven, and let cool on cookie sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer cookies to wire rack to cool.
  5. If desired, sprinkle confectioner’s sugar over the cookies once cool.

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